Shin'en Multimedia seem to wield some sort of superpower when it comes to pulling perfect performance out of the Switch. Fast RMX, Its superb Wipeout-style future racer – which helped fill a gap in the console's launch when Mario Kart 8 Deluxe arrived late – was, and still is, a dazzlingly handsome beast that runs at a super-smooth 60fps and locked 1080p/720p framerate in docked and handheld modes respectively. The Touryst manages to pull off the exact same magic, with a beautiful toybox look heavily reminiscent of this year's Link's Awakening remake; it employs gorgeous voxel and bokeh effects to give its island-hopping adventure a wonderful sense of style, all whilst performing at a flawless 60fps and that same locked-down 1080/720p resolution. Of course, if the game itself isn't up to much all this technological hotness is for nought, and so it's a good thing that The Touryst is one of the freshest, most entertaining surprises of the year on Nintendo's console.
There's a plot lurking somewhere in the background of The Touryst. Your blocky, moustachioed little avatar arrives on Touryst Island and, after a little stumbling around and exploring, finds himself inside the TOWA Monument where he meets an old man who tells him he must find four monument cores in order to reveal the world's secrets. And that's about it. Within minutes you've been let off the leash and you're free to go searching and puzzling your way across the group of islands that make up this beautiful little world. Access to these island playgrounds is granted via travel brochures, the vast majority of which can be purchased from a holiday dealer, although you'll have to search high and low for messages in bottles bobbing in the sea in order to see everything that's on offer here.
The islands themselves are fun little recreations of real-life locations. You've got the hedonistic, beach party setting of Ybiza (complete with blocky little revellers largin' it on the dancefloor and passed out on deckchairs), the dark volcanic sands of Fijy and the drum-beating hula-surf paradise of Hawayy. There's Santoryn – with its stark white Greek-style houses and smartly-attired jazz lounges – and Leysure Island, the tacky tourist heart of the locations on offer.
As you island-hop your way around this exquisite little world in search of the four monuments which contain the cores you need to complete your main quest – and try to figure out exactly how to gain access to the puzzles within them – you'll be kept busy with a dazzling array of excellent minigames. There's a truly fantastic sense of variety on show here and Shin'en has managed to avoid the pitfall of annoying side quests by ensuring all of these activities are genuinely fun, employ a handful of new gameplay mechanics to keep things interesting and never outstaying their welcome.
Over the course of your eight-to-ten-hour adventure here, you'll indulge in some soccer practice with a hard-headed coach, go spelunking down a dangerous mineshaft, take part in a surfing competition, try your hand at scuba-diving and find co-ordinates which enable you to take sweet helicopter rides. You'll take themed photographs for a local art dealer, collect rare manuscripts for a museum and take part in a fun drum rhythm game with some locals down on the shore in Hawayy.
There really is a feast of activities to engage in here as you stumble your way across these beautiful little voxel islands and the whole thing turns into a much more fleshed-out adventure than we'd anticipated in the opening hour or so. As you make your way around you'll also collect coins and diamonds which can be spent on a handful of new moves – a double-jump and a sprint which doubles as a wall-smashing attack – to open up new areas and give you access to previously unreachable goodies, and you'll also spend that hard-earned cash buying records for a stressed-out Ybiza DJ as well as spending time trying to beat Bob's high scores in the retro arcade on Leysure Island. Indeed, the arcade here sports three excellent retro games, one of which is a delightful recreation of the developer's very own Fast RMX. We spent a good hour in this one location trying to best Bob's high scores and it's a perfect example of the thought and effort that's been put into every facet of this charming little game.
Once inside of the mysterious monuments themselves, you'll indulge in some cleverly-designed and beautifully atmospheric puzzles in order to get your hands on each of the four cores you'll need to complete your mission. The variety in the puzzles on offer here is impressive and they all require a decent amount of lateral thinking initially; although there's nothing that could be described as particularly difficult, they all control wonderfully well, apart from one sphere-hopping scenario that tested our patience slightly with its over-exacting nature. Still, they don't outstay their welcome and Shin'en is well aware that the delights of island-hopping are calling, so you're not kept locked down inside these cavernous creations for very long.
In terms of performance, as we mentioned, this game runs flawlessly; we didn't notice a single flicker from 60fps in either handheld or docked modes and the whole thing is beautiful to behold – we'd say even besting Link's Awakening in terms of how it manages to bring its delightful little toybox to life without any of the framerate issues encountered with that title. There's a wonderful chiptune soundtrack backing the whole thing up and this is added to by collecting the five or six records you can pick up at the music store on Leysure Island, with some proper Ibiza party tracks and even a neat little chiptune version of the Fast RMX soundtrack to keep you bopping along as you bounce, swim, dive, surf and puzzle your way to the end of this delightful little adventure.
The Touryst is a joyous little adventure that sinks its blocky little hooks into you and doesn't let go until it's done. It's got a perfect balance of atmospheric puzzling, leisurely exploring and minigame madness that'll keep you thoroughly entertained from start to finish, and its collection of tiny little voxel islands are a joy to discover, bursting with surprises to uncover and presented in a truly dazzling art-style that's achieved whilst performing flawlessly on Nintendo's console. The puzzles might not be the most taxing you'll ever come across and you'll blow through the whole thing pretty quickly, but overall this is a top-notch – and perfectly priced – little gem.
I lyke the look of thys.
This developer can seem to do no wrong, will be getting this at some point.
I've had my eye on this one and will be picking it up as soon as it goes on sell.
I'm kinda intrigued a bit by the gameplay despite i'm not a fan of 3D pixel characters.
But the game is just 200+ MB ?! Wow !
Awesome! Thanks for the review, I'll get it as soon as I get home. We gotta support Shin'en, they're awesome.
Had my eye on this since it was announced. So please it’s turned out good. Is there anything Shin’en can’t do? Now move on to F-Zero please Shin’en
It’s in my wish list for now but will definitely purchase
A little stop gap game before they reveal f zero I think 🤔
I'll pick this up once I've got some dispensable funds. I could write a love song for Shin'en... a love letter/plea for another FAST game (maybe one with vehicle customization, maybe a career mode 0,0 one can dream)
Hmmm, 8 to 10 hours of gameplay for $20? Plus the game is engaging? Sounds like a win to me.
Yep I’m in! Love the art style too!
@sandman89 they would be excellent devs to bring F-Zero to switch! Seeing as they’re massive Nintendo fanboys too they’d do nothing but a good job I’m sure... come on Nintendo get on it!
I’m leaning towards picking this up
Just finished. This game is my cup of tea!
Shin'en is Nintendo-speak for genius. Jest aside, they are one of the most under-rated games developers out there; every game they make is just plain fun. I fully expected The Touryst to be more of the same!
@Lordplops Yep, it sure does look amazyng.
Amazing little game. Absolute gem.
Nice review. Sounds right up my alley and with that filesize it's an instant buy. Got downloaded faster than I could finish writing this post!
Was waiting on a review for this, i'm pretty much convinced on picking this up soon!
Tempted to just nab it now, but will try and hold off for that first sale. Looks like a fantastic time.
Sure sounds like a must-play little game.
Looks great, and totally going to get it when it goes on sale.
Why wait? B/C I have a ton of Shin'en games and they all suffer from the same problem - they LOOK amazing, and their design struggles. Fast RMX is a perfect example, I have the game and DLC on multiple platforms. Fun, as long as you don't look too deep at the gameplay itself. Visuals are AMAZING! (or we could talk about Jett Rocket I & II, Nano Assault, Fun! Fun! Minigolf or Art of Balance all of which have the same issue)
Still, I'm totally looking forward to this. It looks lovely and I'm sure will not be a regret to get on sale. I'm hopeful that the variety of game play will make it a perfect title for Shin'en's uncomparable ability to make visuals shine and shine (Shin'en)!
Here we go 9s for 6 hour games. I guess based on what Nintendolife has been reviewing lately I should be surprised they didn't give it a 10. Everything is relative. In contrast to Garfield sure this is a 9. On the other hand this 9 shouldn't be considered comparable to Luigi Mansion 3.
This game is amazing and one of the best on Switch. Absolutely fantastic, start to finish.
It's insane this game is only 204MB. And strangely, it took multiple minutes to download like it was a GB or more
So @PJOReilly EDIT: I'm surprised nobody had reviews out on release day for The Touryst, a game highlighted in the August Nindies Direct. Were review copies late? Just curious. I'm in no way critisizing you or NL, by the way. Thanks for the review, sir!
Love Shin'en, so this had immediately went on my wish list for now. ^^
@Flowerlark let me know if you want a solution
Watched a great review from Switch Up on this as well. Seems awesome. Perfect winter weekend vacation.
I hope it gets the shine it deserves!
@sixrings You'll understand when you're older that a game that doesn't overstay its welcome is in no way necessarily a bad thing.
@m8e3point1415 He reminds me of Sam Claiborn from IGN. Maybe just cause they got a similar moustache :/
@Flowerlark Put the stones on the ledge. When you’re on there the snake sentinel will stop moving. Aim the stones onto the the holes and throw.
Took a chance on this before the review and despite my backlog. Thought i'd give it a quick go yesterday, just to see !! then add it to my backlog. Couldn't put it down. Loving it!
I have been waiting for this review. Shinen is just a marvel with producing beautiful visuals with limited hardware. You don't see games as beautiful as theirs on other consoles sometimes.
It's Amazing how Shin'en isn't an official developer being published by Nintendo these days. The work they do is incredibly good.
@JayJ Maybe that's for the best. I don't want them to become the new Gamefreak, churning out the same thing every year.
Took a chance on this because I loved the concept, the visuals and the company behind it. It's been good fun but I'm stuck – trying to get in the Lyfta monument.
I heard someone say one puzzle requires you to turn on rumble – but I'm on a Lite! I hope this has been thought of and I'm not on an impossible mission for the Lite?!
On my wish list.
On my wishlist.
Friend of mine got it but finished it in around 3 - 4 hours.
Waiting for a sale
Am I wrong in sensing a bit of Lego City: Undercover here?
@sixrings Probably this will be a better 9s for me than Luigi's Mansion 3 is. LM3 is just so damn repetitive... I'm not enjoying it AT ALL. I'm at B2 now and have no idea, why I even keep collecting money. So damn useless. This game here on the other hand looks amazing and entertaining!
It's about time Nintendo to hire Shinen to make a full fledge retail game published by Nintendo. They are technical wizards and make great games. Let's see what they can do with financial backing and the ability to make something at an AAA level.
@Gerbwmu I would love to see them make a new F-Zero
That's more The Pokemon Company's fault than it is Nintendo.
@Spudtendo Yeah Nintendo clearly doesn't do that with every developer they publish for, a lot of their developers are allowed many years between games to refine everything. Pokemon is just such a massive brand for them that it generates a lot of demand.
I'd give it a 7.5/10
It's fun, I like it, but not as good as FAST RMX or Nano Assault
A game worthy of a 9 out of 10 unlike ARMS.
Exactly, and there have been reports that the devs at Game Freak were frustrated with TPC executives because they wanted more time to work on S/S and were being rushed. (I'm enjoying the games but yeah, they could definitely be better)
I was burned by this developer with Fast RMX, so if I'm going to give this one a try, it has to be on sale. Fast RMX was just...ugh.
I was gonna wait for the first sale, but felt bad seeing it's not even in the top 20 on the eshop, so I decided to buy it today at full price. The developers should be rewarded for their commitment to making fun games that run at 1080p 60fps.
"Striking visual style employs voxel and bokeh effects to create a beautiful little toybox world"
Tilt shift lens effect?
@HeavyArmsSS any replay value?
It's getting high scores but I hear it's quite a short game? What's the replay ability like?
@Fath I'm 40. I don't want 100 hour games. But 20 hours would work well for me
This game is very similar to Mario Odyssey, only difference is: it is fun.
The Touryst and Dig 2 are 2 games in the 200mb category that are more fun than most games over 10gb in size, and that includes Nintendo games. Economy-wise for sdcard, they are worth their stay in the storage.
@sixrings A lot of games that try to brag about how many hours you can get out of them seem to be really boring to me, and they generally come off as the type of games that fans are meant to obsess over for long periods of time. Personally I just have too many other games to play and I hardly ever run into a game that doesn't have sandbox elements where I want to keep putting a lot of time into them.
Hmmm, same length, but original and using modern controls. This is way better than Zelda LA remake (which has performance
problems and didn’t update much gameplay).
This is the better game and also much, much, much cheaper!
Their Art of Balance games were always good, if a bit on the easy side. Even if I'm not that hooked on voxel-style aesthetics, this looks like good fun, and I know I can expect quality from Shin'en.
Oh wow I'd completely forgotten about this game, but glad to hear it's as good as it looked in the first trailer! Definitely putting this on the ol' wishlist.
It’s a great game, however I’m stuck on Fijy island because I don’t know the code to enter the temple, someone could help?
@Javivihe Me too - someone help!
Hey @PJOReilly Do you think it'd be good to report when games are 'broken' on Switch Lite like this one currently is?
Turns out there is a puzzle, driving a few of us mad to enter the Fijy Island monument that demands HD Rumble to solve! Not that it actually indicates that at any point, it just leaves you to keep trying to solve an impossible task. The only reason I know this is I just saw it on a Youtube play-though.
Would have been nice to know that before buying. Also Youtube does not provide a solution since it seems the rumble 'code' is random each time. Genius move Devs. So this is literally unbeatable without a patch on Switch Lite!
Seems to me Shin'en Multimedia have really dropped the ball for Switch Lite players which I should imagine is a lot of people now. Please could you do us a solid and talk to Shin'en Multimedia about a patch please.
Otherwise anyone with a Switch Lite, has payed about £18 for a broken game and due to Nintendo's ridiculous policy cannot get a refund. Also they will have no idea why after hours of head scratching why they can't solve the puzzle - like some in this thread @Javivihe
Otherwise great game – but what an enormous omission. Did they simply think 'ah well nevermind the Lite users?! Mind-boggling.
@brunojenso I played on a regular Switch so had absolutely no idea about this! Seems like something that would be patched pretty quickly though.
Good news, I’ve solved it, I don’t know if this works with a switch lite, when you press some platforms you will hear a low sound, not vibration, if you press only those platforms you’ll be done!
@Javivihe Wow ok - I didn't hear a thing, even with headphones
Hi, 'The Touryst' is fully Switch Lite compatible. Even when there is no rumble then you will hear soundFx indicating how a puzzle can be solved.
@Javivihe That's right, and you were even faster to answer
@Manfred Ok I'll try again - is it possible it's a very low sound effect?– I heard nothing – but as I say I'll try again later. Really appreciate the active developer response.
Not a huge fan of voxel graphics but there's something about this one that just looks good; the combination of colour, lighting and depth of field that works well. Definitely grabbing this one when it goes on sale unless I finish my backlog...
@Manfred maybe consider a screen-shake like Super Mario Odyssey does. Some (not me though) like to play without sound, while they are listening to a podcast or such.
I enjoyed this, but for me it's a 7/10 and I would hesitate to recommend it because it has rough edges and is lacking in certain crucial aspects.
It looked gorgeous, is nice and varied, and controls were mostly OK (though canoe controls were reversed and/or simply wrong).
It felt more like Golf Story to me than Zelda, but is much shorter (not a problem) and less enjoyable (a problem) than than either of those. The game just wasn't tight enough, it felt a bit hollow and lacking. The status of some goals was difficult to figure out (which X of Y items have I already got?). It is a technically brilliant engine in search of great gameplay, which I feel is the same problem with all Shin'en games. I say this because I care.
I loved the arcade mini games. I didn't like the poor English translation - including errors in grammar, punctuation and line-breaks/wrapping. I also feel some of the jokes had been lost in translation, one in particular in a beach hut made absolutely zero sense.
Finally, I hope that Shin'en hire somebody to work on core gameplay, leaving their existing staff to work on their brilliant engine technology.
Eh, $20 for only 6 to 10 hours of gameplay is pretty ridiculous IMO. I'd bite at $10, but not $20. I'll wait for a sale.
@Lordplops ERROR: character at the begynnyng of your sentence not recognysed.
Really enjoying this but some little frustrations in the gameplay. Aiming when throwing isn't always consistent and sometimes a projectile just doesn't stick to what its supposed to. Then theres the really irritating platforming ... jumping from one ball to another shouldn't be this irksome. The graphics are gorgeous and plays great BUT the bokeh effect was a bit close and hurt my eyes a bit. Your character must be awfully short sighted. Started off thinking it was gonna be a kinda Metroidvania ... my hopes were dashed as quickly I realised there was only 2 (ledge hang doesnt count!!) powers. Really like the arcade but that Bomb Jack rip-off controls terribly. Would be much better with the buttons for left n right ... you need to push up to jump high but there doesn't seem to be a sweet spot in the middle making jumping straight up virtually impossible. These are all minor quibbles though. Great game and no problem with the price.
Edit ... okay, was wrong bout Bomb Jack controls. Too used to playing the original Bomb Jack where you have to push up to go higher. This one controls great.
Nice review and nice score. I'll download it someday when its cheaper.
Picked it up after getting some eShop gift cards, figured it won't go on sale for a while since it's only on Switch. Great game but a bit short. I normally hate voxel graphics but the vibrant colours in this one just clicked. The depth of field thing can be annoying but reduced the higher you tilt the camera and gone when indoors. Some of the platforming is a bit frustrating but not impossible feeling. My 13 year old daughter who likes the exploration and puzzles of Zelda, but not the evil/combat, has really taken to The Touryst. I finished it with 94% on the first run and immediately started it over to 100% it on the second. My saved game is on the island with the arcade, I imagine I'll pop in there every now and then to try and one up my high scores.
This game is way too short and the ending was so underwhelming! Game was fun but I kept waiting for more. Got it at 13,99€, still feel it was expensive for what I got. It's a small game with a lot of good ideas but when you reach the end, you feel like you've only started to scratch the surface of it. Plus a lot of tiny problems (aiming is really hard!). Enjoyable, but overall I'm disappointed. I'd give it a 6/10.
@terry93 the reason the ending was underwhelming was because the devolopers were making way for a sequel to pass. All big game developers do it. And regarding it feeling short, that’s what makes the game special. It’s a short little game to play for a couple hours and pick it up a couple years later to play again. I personally loved this game, but to each his own, and I respect your opinion ✌🏼
@GeeBee I agree but do you know how much money it costs to make a game look THAT good? And all the little secrets and fun mini games make it plenty worthwhile for at the most $20. But I agree, they could have put a lot more for it to be that expensive.
@koekiemonster and it’s also much more original. I know people are complaining about the price, but they forget people like EA, releasing nothing new for game’s and charging $60, or Nintendo releasing the same game made years ago with better graphics thinking we’ll bite.
@Swizze the replay ability is actually the only downside for me. After you beat the game, there are a lot of things to do on your to-do list, but after that it’s done. No special reward, no nothing. So if you only get games to play forever, I strongly discourage this game.
@Kalmaro finally someone who thinks positive about the price. I mean c’mon? That’s a great steal for a beautiful engaging game like this.
@Apportal_SMM2 Thanks for responding, I actually forgot to put this on my wishlist.
Finally playing it and it really is FANTASTIC.
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